Dark Curse (Dark, #16) by Christine Feehan
Series: Dark Series #16
Also in this series: Dark Nights (Dark #6.5, #9.5), Dark Wolf (Dark, #25), Dark Promises (Dark, #29), Dark Carousel (Dark, #30), Dark Legacy (Dark, #31), Dark Slayer (Dark, #17), Dark Sentinel (Dark #28)
Publication Date: September 4, 2008
Genres: Paranormal Romance
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Born into a world of ice, and slave to her evil father, Lara Calladine knew only paralyzing fear as a child—and escaping with her mysterious gifts unbroken would be the only way to survive her great Carpathian heritage as a Dragonseeker. Human, yet mage, she was of the blood of three species yet belonged to none. She walked her chosen path alone, guided by the wisdom of her aunts—to blend in and let no one know of her ancestry and powers. And never trust anyone. For beyond the frozen hell of her youth was a world of even greater mysteries and dangers.
Today Lara is the leading expert in the field of ice cave study around the world and the healing microorganisms that thrive in them. She’s also in search of something else: the source of her nightmares—the cold dark corners of her childhood. Only one man has the will and the powers to help her: Nicolas De La Cruz, for whom centuries of hunting and killing have long since taken their toll. Dangerous and arrogant, he still longs to feel sensual love without the hunger for blood. Now, between Lara and Nicolas, a tenuous trust has emerged, and a passion neither has ever known before as a melody of dark promise begins.
But as each scales the treacherous land of the Carpathian in search of their past, they also harbor a secret that could save or destroy them. And as each may be desirous of a new beginning as lifemates, they are also haunted by the unknown dangers of a dark curse.
This is something like the 19th book in the Dark Series. Honestly…19? How can you keep it fresh after 19 books? Still, I’m a diehard fan. The first paranormal I ever read was Dark Prince back in 2000. It was before I read about things like forced seduction. Still, I love Dark Prince and have re-read it more than once.
Nicolas de la Cruz has come to the Carpathian mountains from his home in South America to admit to the Prince that he and his brothers have committed what he thinks is treason. After he confesses to Mikhail, he is going to admit defeat and walk into the sun. Srsly. That is such a common theme in these books, it might as well just be assumed that every male is about to commit suicide before they miraculously find their lifemate. Shockingly enough, Nicolas finds Lara hours before he would have “met the dawn”. Lucky bastard.
Lara was one of the more interesting heroines in this series. She is directly related to Xavier, the evil mage that is trying to destroy the Carpathian race. It was when she was eight years old that she escaped Xavier and his ice caves, with the help of her dragon aunts. For years Lara’s father, Razvan, and Xavier brutally fed from her, giving her a healthy fear of “feeding”. So when Nicolas bonds them together, she’s terrified of not only being his source of blood, but having to feed from him as well. It brings all sorts of nasty memories to the surface. The memories also make her question whether or not her father was as evil as she’s always believed.
I think Feehan did a good job of keeping the reader involved. It took me a week to read this book, which is almost unheard of for me. It started off slow and could have been any other Dark book. It was halfway through the book that I started getting more intrigued. Feehan has finally addressed why Carpathian women either miscarry or have male children. I was really interested in reading more about that. It’s been such a prominent issue in this series that it was nice to finally have the why of it explored.
For me, this book was a turning point in the series. Feehan has stayed true to the world she created while creating a new and interesting conflict. I’m really looking forward to where this series is going.
4 out of 5.